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The church exists by mission, just as fire exists by burning.
Emil Brunner
The task of the theologian, like the task of the preacher, is to write theology in such a way as to persuade modern people.
John Leith, Basic Christian Doctrine, p.9
Desire in itself is movement
Not in itself desireable;
Love is itself unmoving,
Only the cause and the end of movement,
Timeless and undesiring
Except in the aspect of time
Caught in the form of limitation
Between unbeing and being.
TS Eliot, Burnt Norton, in Four Quartets
What narrowness of spiritual life we find in Frazer! And as a result: how impossible for him to understand a different way of life from the English one of his time!
Ludwig Wittgenstein, Remarks on Frazer's Golden Bough, p. 5e
Desire in itself is movement
Not in itself desireable;
Love is itself unmoving,
Only the cause and the end of movement,
Timeless and undesiring
Except in the aspect of time
Caught in the form of limitation
Between unbeing and being.
TS Eliot, Burnt Norton, in Four Quartets
Those like myself whose imagination far exceeds their obedience are subject to a just penalty; we easily imagine conditions far higher than any we have really reached. If we describe what we have imagined we may make others, and make ourselves, believe that we have really been there.
C.S. Lewis, The Four Loves, p. 128
“Unless the church of the West begins to understand this (mission as a permanent and instrinsic dimension of the church’s life, “The church exists by mission, just as fire exists by burning.”), and unless we develop a missionary theology, not just a theology of mission, we will not achieve more than merely patch up the church. We are in need of a missiological agenda for theology, not just a theological agenda for mission; for theology, rightly understood, has no reason to exist other than critically to accompany the missio Dei.”
David Bosch, p.32
Bach's music is much more valuable proof of the existence of God than any of the theological proofs.
Vladimir Fetsmin, Russian Pianist, Newsweek, Aug. 1, 1994
Jesus' preaching is in fact characterized by a large element of simple fact-telling, of simply telling people with authority what actually is.
Dale Bruner, The Christbook, p. 120
C.S. Lewis says...the proper rewards are not simply tacked on to the activity for which they are given, but are the activity itself in cosummation. So it is with the Christian doctrine of reward.
Archibald Hunter, A Pattern for Life
Prayer is not just one of the many things people do in life, but rather 'the basic receptive attitude out of which all of life can receive new vitality.'
Dan Postema, Space for God, p. 92
It is necessary to be disengaged from all we feel and do in order to walk with God in the duty of the present moment.
Jean-Pierre De Caussade, The Sacrament of the Present Moment, p. 15
Johann Winer, whose grammar first appeared in 1824...introduced a revolution into the study of the Greek New Testament by adopting and substantiating the premise that Biblical Greek, and particularly that of the New Testament, was not a special 'Holy Ghost' language, nor a conglomerate of Greek words and Semitic grammar, but the ordinary colloquial tongue of the day, spoken through the Graeco-Roman world.
Dana and Mantey, Manual Grammar of the Greek NT (vii-ix)
All written language calls for retransformation into its spoken form; it calls for its lost power.
Richard Palmer, Hermeneutics, p. 15
St. Francis of Assisi's religion was 'not a thing like a theory but a thing like a love affair.'
G.K. Chesterton

Ambiance

19th October 2012

Wittgenstein once wrote, “‘Uttering a word is like striking a note on the keyboard of the imagination.”  The following quotes are collections of words which sound the common theme of Wirkungsgeschichte in my own mind.  I hope they play a similar tune for you.

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Ludwig Wittgenstein

The idea that in order to get clear about the meaning of a general term one had to find the common element in all its applications has shackled philosophical investigation; for it has not only led to no result, but also made the philosopher dismiss as irrelevant the concrete cases, which alone could have helped him to understand the usage of the general term.”

 

Ludwig Wittgenstein, The Blue Book, p. 19-20

 

 

 

H.R. Jauss

“If one looks at the moments in history when literary works toppled the taboos of the ruling morals or offered the reader new solutions for the moral casuistry of his lived praxis, which thereafter could be sanctioned by the consensus of all readers in the society, then a still-little-studied area of research opens itself up to the literary historian.  The gap between literature and history, between aesthetic and historical knowledge, can be bridged if literary history does not simply describe the process of general history…but…discovers…that properly socially formative function that belongs to literature…” H.R. Jauss.

 

 

 

“The readings, the interpretations and critical judgements of art, literature and music from within art, literature and music are of a penetrative authority rarely equaled by those offered from outside, by those propounded by the non-creator, this is to say the reviewer, the critic, the academic.”   George Steiner, Real Presencesp. 12.

George Steiner

 

Georgia Warnke

 

 

“In confronting texts, different views and perspectives, alternative life forms and world views, we can put our own prejudices in play and learn to enrich our own point of view.”

Georgia Warnke, Gadamer:  Hermeneutics, Tradition and Reason p.4

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Karl Barth

 

 

‘I have been called a ‘declared enemy of historical criticism’…But what I reproach them with is not historical criticism, the right and necessity of which on the contrary I once more explicitly recognize, but the way they stop at an explanation of the text which I cannot call any explanation, but only the first primitive step towards one, namely, establishing ‘what is said’…’ Karl Barth, Romans, 1921, p. x.

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Karlfried Froehlich

 

 

“‘Understanding’ a biblical text cannot stop with the elucidation of its prehistory and of its historical Sitz im Leben, with its focus on the intention of the author.  Understanding must take into account the text’s post-history as the paradigm of the text’s own historicity, i.e. as the way the text itself can function as a source of self-interpretation in a variety of contexts, and thus through its historical interpretations is participating in the shaping of life.”  Karlfried Froelich, Church History and the Bible in M.S. Burrows and P. Rorem (eds), Biblical Hermeneutics in Historical Perspective (Grand Rapids, MI:  Eerdmans, 1991, p. 9)

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Andrew Thiselton

 

“It is not enough to establish past ‘facts’ about the text once-and-for-all; it requires successive engagements with successive readers to bring out its potential meaning in interaction with a series of horizons.”  Anthony Thiselton, summarizing Jauss, in Thiselton on Hermeneutics, p. 293.

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“…Gadamer acknowledges a degree of stability in the role of communal judgements, and in the corporate transmission of traditions.  Even if a ‘classic’ yields a plurality of actualizations, it belongs to cumulative traditions of acknowledged wisdom (phronesis).  p. 8  Thiselton on Hermeneutics.

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Henry Venn

 

 

“…Henry Venn of the Church Missionary Society…argued that the fullness of the church would only come with the fullness of the national manifestations of different national churches…”  Andrew Walls, The Missionary Movement in Christian History, p. 12.

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Dr. Andrew Walls

 

 

“Perhaps a comparative history of translation would be an illuminating way of approaching the history of Christian mission and expansion-not only  in the geographical and statistical sense of the spread of the Church, but the dynamic expansion of the influence of Christ within the Church that comes from attempts at the radical application of his mind within particular cultures.”   Andrew Walls, The Missionary Movement in Christian History, p. 30.

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